We understand it can be difficult to find a reel that is ultralight yet effective. So, we have reviewed some of the top-rated fishing reels to help you buy the Best Ultralight Spinning Reels.
We’ve also put together a buying guide on what to consider when choosing an ultralight reel.
If you are in a hurry:
Without further ado, let us move to our in-depth reviews.
Top 11 Best Ultralight Spinning Reels
Last update on 2022-11-29 / Paid links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Cadence CS5 Ultralight Spinning Reel
I ordered the Cadence CS5 for both freshwater and saltwater fishing. I use it with the Cadence CR5-30 spinning rod. The reel balances well on this rod.
The reel is ultralight and the entire rig put together is lightweight. I needed a reel that can pull the fish in fast yet have a smooth drag. This thing has 8 stainless steel anti-corrosive ball bearings.
The gear ratio is 5.2:1. The carbon fiber drag is smooth. The max drag of the CS5 1000 is 9lbs and the CS5 4000 is 16lbs. The price point for the reel is great, but I went ahead and upgraded to the 4000 because the price difference wasn’t a lot.
I’m so glad that I did because it is very powerful. It was totally worth it. The cast is smooth and steady.
As I said, the reel is corrosion-resistant. That’s good for me because I’m not great at keeping up with cleaning it up every time I come in from the day. It does seem pretty water-resistant.
I haven’t had any problems with water, sand, or dust getting locked up in the gears. I am so happy with this reel. It is easy to use, lightweight, and super powerful!
KastKing Centron Ultralight Spinning Reel
KastKing Centron Reels are lightweight, high power, smooth, and stylish. These reels come with a large number of features at a low price point. The unique design, a lightweight graphite frame, and a powerful drag make for an easy-to-cast reel.
The staple features, like casting and reeling, are great. Instant anti-reverse and a collapsible crank handle make this reel easy to use. The reel is very versatile. It is compatible with both mono and braided line. Centron is an excellent addition to your fishing gear.
The lightweight graphite frame and 9+1 ball bearing system provide maximum drag power. The reel can handle a variety of fish – from bass to carp to catfish. The ultralight, compact design makes the casting effortless even for beginners.
The KastKing spinning reels look great too. The two-color anodized aluminum has a sleek design and stands up to wear so it always looks brand new.
Finally, the customer service is great. If anything about your reel doesn’t work, they are quick and happy to help. Buying KastKing Centron 5000 is one of the easiest decisions you can make.
Penn Battle II Saltwater Spinning Reel
Penn Battle II is easy to cast thanks to the smooth drag system and five shielded stainless steel ball bearings. You never experience pullback due to the instant anti-reverse bearing. You can reel in without any sort of interruption.
The aluminum body makes it lightweight and easy to use than even more expensive reels. The lightweight makes it a breeze to travel with and the drag is easy to adjust to suit your needs.
It is easy to take apart in case you need to clean it. The reel even comes with a rubber gasket to prevent slipping.
The Penn Battle II reel is easy to integrate into your fishing kit. The spool is compatible with a variety of lines. The spool can use a braided line without a monofilament backing. You can use the reel with Superline. The line capacity rings allow you to check how much line is remaining.
Pflueger Supreme XT Ultralight Reel
Pflueger Supreme is very strong for such a lightweight reel. It is durable enough to handle several hours of fishing daily, and won’t fall apart even if you use it a lot. High-quality materials set the Pflueger Supreme apart and keep light but sturdy.
The ultralight magnesium alloy and carbon fiber make the reel durable. It is quite resistant to wear and tear. You can be sure that your reel is going to last for as long as you need it to.
Bails are often the first things to get broken on a spinning reel. But Pflueger made the bails on this one stronger than usual.
Another part of the reel designed to last long is the sealed drag system. In other products, the drag gets affected when something gets into the gears, or they can get stuck. Pflueger Supreme made the whole system out of one piece, so it is a lot harder to break.
Ten is the most number of bearings that a spinning reel can hold, and the Pflueger Supreme puts them all to work. Having so many bearings helps keep the reel operation smooth. Also, you can crank the handle without worrying about it getting stuck.
Pflueger’s Supreme XT is powerful enough to handle a few large fish who might be fighting the line. Even though it is a small reel for fish that are only a few pounds, I have used it to bring in fish that are double that weight.
Okuma Avenger Ultralight Spinning Reel
I bought and used the Okuma Avenger A series and love it. My wife bought me another for my birthday and she gave me this B series reel, the ABF-55B. Both bait feeders are fricking awesome. It has a one-handed bait feeder which is great. I’m able to put down the rod and wait.
I like how when the fish grabs the bait and runs, the spinning reel disengages letting the fish run. It gives off a crisp clicking sound. The maximum drag is adjustable.
The bait feeder has always switched with ease and shifts the reel to the front drag. The multi-disc drag system is incredibly smooth and powerful.
It’s easy to determine if there’s a bigger fish. The speed that drags spool out depends on how much fight the fish is giving on the line. Again, the line pulls off really smoothly due to the drag system’s oil felt washers.
The gear ratio is 4.5:1 with a max drag of 19. The graphite body and rotor are all corrosion-resistant. That includes the 6 ball bearings and 1 anti-reverse bearing.
The T shape handle is very comfortable. It’s so easy to use, I have two or three rods in the water at a time. This good ultralight reel is a great addition to my fishing gear.
KastKing Sharky III Lightweight Spinning Reel
The sheer amount of features this reel has for its price is incredible. It is one of the smoothest and most reliable reels available in its class. For the price that this reel goes for on the market, there aren’t any formidable competitors.
It is well-built and versatile. In fact, every part of this reel is designed with longevity in mind:
- Stainless steel body.
- Reinforced 3-disc carbon fiber drag.
- Anti-corrosive zinc alloy gears.
- MaxiDur stainless steel ball bearings.
Instant lock anti-reverse prevents slipping at critical moments. The aluminum handle is durable and long-lasting. High-density EVA grips offer a solid grip under all circumstances. The reel also features zinc alloy drive gear for a solid all-around performance.
Sharky III 4000 has a 5.2:1 gear ratio and offers a max drag of 39 lb. This is a very powerful combination to give you ultimate flexibility. The drag system uses 3 discs to provide resilient functionality under all conditions.
It comes with 10+1 ball bearings to give you smooth control. It features a revolutionary spool design that removes the need for linebacking.
The manganese brass pinion is durable and resistant to wear & tear. The sheer power of this reel given all its design elements is astonishing. The intuitive way all parts flow gives you confidence that you will not find any other reel in its class.
Okuma Ceymar Ultralight Spinning Reel
Okuma Ceymar is an ultralight yet heavy-duty fishing reel. It offers multi-disc support and a felt drag system with 5 pounds of drag.
Okuma has crafted the Ceymar spinning reel using precision-machined 2-tone anodized aluminum. It comes with anti-reverse roller bearings to provide stability even under extreme conditions.
This ultralight Okuma reel comes with a precision elliptical gearing system. It featured 6 stainless steel bearings and 1 roller bearing. The machine-cut brass pinion gear helps reduce the weight.
It has a gear ratio of 5.0:1. It has a line retrieve of 21 in. which gives you much leeway. It has a line capacity of 2/210, 4/110, or 6/70 which gives you flexibility in choosing the right line for your technique.
Inside the box, you will find the Okuma Ceymar wrapped in protective packaging. The packaging is very neat and organized which provides a sense of confidence in the product. You will also get a set of in-depth instructions and a warranty manual.
The multi-disc oiled felt drag gives you cutting-edge control over your catch. The maximum drag combined with the 2-tone machined aluminum spool gives you the ultimate performance.
The handle on this reel has an ergonomic design for ultimate comfort. Okuma Ceymar has a corrosion-resistant body architecture to protect your reel from degradation.
The Okuma Ceymar reel has an astonishing design and streamlined aesthetic quality. The handle uses forged zinc that is rigid in combination with a black anodized handle design. Okuma has designed this reel using machined aluminum with a wobble-free anodized spool.
KastKing Valiant Eagle Fishing Reel
KastKing Valiant Eagle 3000 is comparable to spinning reels that cost much more. It only weighs 10.1 ounces and it is super lightweight. It comes with KastKing’s special line management system to help you with long casts.
The gear ratio is 6.2:1. It has a fast retrieve rate. If you don’t know what that means, it means it reels in fast and you’ll be able to get the line back out quicker for more catches!
There are 10 + 1 shielded stainless steel ball bearings. This makes casting and retrieving silky smooth. The spool is braid-ready and spooling is easy. I never saw twisting or tangling on the line on the spool.
It’s very powerful, that’s all I can say. It has a sealed drag system with a 22lb max drag. This reel is suitable for both saltwater fishing and freshwater fishing. I’ve only used it for walleye fishing, so I can only comment on saltwater fishing. Yes, it handles very well in saltwater.
It has a low price tag for a great brand name. If you’re into the style and looks of the reel, I’d say you’d like the way this looks. The emerald green color pops and the black graphite body shines.
The design on the aluminum spool looks cool. Sometimes I see how it does look like an eagle, like the name so that’s cool too.
Penn Spinfisher VI Spinning Reel
This reel’s strength…is its strength. You can catch a kingfish off a kayak if you want. To match the power, it has a fluid 5-ball-bearing cranking system that does most of the heavy lifting for you. There is a 6th bearing in the anti-reverse system as well.
Penn Spinfisher VI comes with the HT-100 drag system. The 100 in HT-100 stands for the expected run length before you have to change the drag system. 100 miles is a good lifespan for the cost of this reel.
Penn has made adjusting the drag a much more pleasant experience. You can adjust the maximum drag using the simple 4-click system on the back of the reel. No more having to reset and adjust. The drag also lets out as your reel turns. It is as close to autopilot as it gets.
The body is all metal and the side plates are as well. The gear parts get made one at a time and not on an assembly line, which adds to its durability. Any model 5500 and below contain aluminum gears. Models over 5500 come with brass gears.
All models are ambidextrous. You can change the handle from one side to another.
We all recognize a Penn reel when we see one. The Spinfisher VI also maintains the brand look. The gold and black look complements the strength and durability. The reel is easy to use. The gear adjustment is at the bottom. Drag and anti-reverse are right at your fingertips.
Penn gets an A on customer service. I have not had to use them myself. But, people have gotten brand-new reels when they have sent them in for repairs. That is pretty awesome.
Penn Clash II Fishing Reel
Penn had a reputation for putting out heavy reels. But, much of their gear from the past several years are using new technology and materials. The idea was to cut weight while remaining durable.
Penn Clash II is a good example of this. Penn Clash II is a fantastic fishing reel with great specs.
It comes with the Rigid Resin RR30 Carbon rotor with Techno Balance Technology. RR30 Carbon is high-strength graphite that is powerful yet lightweight. The reel also has a full aluminum body with an aluminum side plate and rotor but only weighs 8.5 oz.
The low weight allows you to fish all day without hurting your back. Or go up a reel size and have the extra line and power in case a bigger fish happens to come along. The choice is yours.
In addition to the ultra-low weight, it comes with 8+1 upgraded ball bearings. It also has a super line spool, line capacity rings, and an Infinite Anti-Reverse bearing.
The 2500 model can also handle up to 140 yards of 10lb mono line or 160 yards of 20lb braid. This makes it perfect for catching big or small fish.
The Penn Clash series is ideal for big fish. You can even catch a 30-pound redfish with ease on the 2500 model. Having the Penn name and quality behind your new reel will give you the confidence to use it over and over again.
It can survive an accidental dunking or a bang on rocks without a problem. And if you buy the wrong size, the Clash is a quality reel that tends to hold its resale value.
KastKing Brutus Spinning Reel
KastKing makes many different reels for different types of fishing and I have a lot of them! Recently, they came out with the Brutus which is a double pickup reel.
I chose to buy the 4000 model as it was only a bit more expensive than the 2000 model.
It is a 5:1 gear ratio that provides fast line retrieve but provides enough power to reel in fish like trout or bass. It has on it a max drag of 17 ½ lbs.
I usually use a 40 lb. braided line. That works well for me and don’t usually have a problem with the line slipping. The ball bearings are 4+1.
Of course, it has all the qualities that we expect from KastKing. Durability, graphite frame, and rotor, aluminum ball bearings with a high capacity spool. Reversible handle for easy casting and retrieval. Like I said, all this I and others expect from KastKing.
It is the Best Ultralight Spinning Reels Under 50 for anyone starting out. You’ll know that you’ll want to add this to your collection. It’s lightweight and the price is reasonable.
What is an Ultralight Spinning Reel?
When choosing the right reel for your fishing needs, you’ll need to know a little about what you’re looking for. A spinning reel is a fishing reel that is often mounted on the underside of a fishing rod.
An ultralight spinning reel is compact, lightweight, and durable. It is typically used in freshwater fishing as it is simple and easy to use.
Ultralight spinning reels are much smaller than traditional spinning reels. They are lightweight and easy to use. The small size also helps with the weight of the reel. A lightweight spinning reel can help you cast with a minimum of effort and yet be able to handle larger fish.
An ultralight spinning reel has two main parts. The spool that houses the line, and the reel where one end of the line gets attached.
The spool will determine how much line is on the reel at any given time. If this amount of line is too short, then you are not able to cast out as far. The spool rotates on an axis that is perpendicular to the plane of rotation.
Benefits of an Ultralight Spinning Reel
There are many benefits of ultralight spinning reels. One of them is that they are lighter. So you can use them for longer periods of time without getting fatigued.
They also use less energy, which means you can go fishing for longer periods of time. Ultralight spinning reels give anglers more control over the fish they are catching. This is why they are so popular with beginners.
An ultralight reel typically weighs between 5-8 ounces. They are much lighter than other types of fishing reels that usually weigh between 10-25 ounces. They also have a smaller profile. It allows you to store them easier in your backpack or carry-on luggage.
Lightweight reels are perfect for anglers who want to travel light, yet want the features and performance of a larger reel.
An ultralight spinning reel will make a day of fishing a lot easier for you and your arm – it’s worth it. If your needs are simple but versatile, having an ultralight spinning reel is perfect!
Spinning Versus Baitcasting for Ultralight Fishing
For many anglers, the process of fishing isn’t just about catching fish. It’s also about feeling like they’re in control. The reel is the most important part of the fishing gear. It is what turns the lure into a hook, and holds it in place while you are reeling in.
The first thing to look at is the type of reel you want: spinning or baitcasting reel. This will likely depend on what kind of fishing you’ll be doing. A spinning reel is often used for ultralight fishing as it has a faster retrieval than baitcasting reels.
If you’re primarily looking for a reel that will work for panfish, trout, and bass – then spinning is the right choice.
If you’re casting lures or baits into deeper water where there are snags like rocks or brush, then a baitcaster is a better option.
A spinning reel is a great option if you’re looking for a lightweight and versatile option. You can use spinning reels to catch different types of fish and in saltwater or freshwater. They offer many line capacity options and various levels of drag strength. You can choose one depending on what type of fishing you intend to do.
How to Choose the Best Ultralight Spinning Reel
We will look at the factors to consider when choosing an ultralight spinning reel.
- Type of fish
- Model size
- Line capacity and weight
- Gear ratio
- Drag system
Type of fish
The first thing you should consider is the type of fish you plan on catching. The kind of fish you are targeting will determine how much line you need, the size of your hooks, and how much weight needs to be on your hook.
To choose an ultralight spinning reel you want to know the reel size or class. The size will depend on how much weight your line will be carrying and how big your fish will be.
The model size is usually listed as a number, often in the thousands. For example, size 1000, 2000, 3000, etc., A smaller size reel is great for mono or braid since it will hold less line.
Big saltwater reels can run up to 30000 sizes. But ultralight reels usually come under the 1000-3000 range.
A 1000-size reel is great for catching small fish in shallow rivers or streams. You will need a 2000-size reel to catch bigger fish, like trout. Larger trout and Bass species will need 3000 or 3500-class reels.
Line Capacity and Weight
You need to consider the pound rating, line capacity, and weight before buying a reel. Whether you’re a beginner or a pro angler, it’s important to know what these specs mean. It will help you make an informed decision.
The spinning reel’s design affects its capacity and weight. Usually, a larger size reel will have a higher capacity or weight than a smaller one. So you need to get a heavier or bigger spinning reel if your fishing line is really heavy or long.
Line capacity is how much line is on the spool before it’s full. It’s measured in yards or meters. Understanding different fishing lines’ thicknesses and weights can help you choose the right reel for your needs.
Weight is how much the reel weighs when it’s all set up, and it’s usually measured in pounds or kilograms.
Reel gears are the mechanisms that control the direction of line retrieval on a fishing reel. They can be either mechanical or magnetic.
A lot of factors go into determining what gear ratio is ideal for a certain type of fishing. But it all boils down to line retrieval speed and casting distance.
The gear ratio is the number of turns that the spool makes for one turn of the crank handle. The higher ratio means that the spool turns more times per turn of the crank. It means you can retrieve more line per crank handle rotation.
The lower gear ratio means fewer turns by the spool per crank handle rotation. It means less line gets retrieved per turn of the crank handle.
Higher ratios are better for long casting distances and lower ratios are better for closer range fishing. Lower gear ratios provide faster retrieval speeds.
Ultralight spinning reels are designed for lightweight fishing. They come with the right gear ratio to give you an easy time when reeling in line.
Drag systems on most lightweight fishing reels suit both freshwater and saltwater anglers. They offer the best of both worlds. More pounds of drag than your typical baitcasting reels. But are still easy to adjust for light-duty jobs.
There are two main types of drags: revolving and fixed.
Revolving drags use centrifugal force to create resistance on the fishing line. This creates tension on the line as it goes through the spool. It helps fight out larger fish without slowing down too much after each strike.
Front-drag reels usually come with a clutch. It helps you control the level of drag applied to any fish you’re fighting.
When you want to fight a fish against the current, you need a reel with a strong and smooth drag system that won’t slow down or stall.
Cadence CS5 is the Best Ultralight Spinning Reel for fishing as per our reviews. The corrosion-resistant graphite body makes the reel work well in all conditions. With the multi-disc felt drag system, this reel is a superior lightweight option.
We hope you like our pick of the Best Ultralight Spinning Reels. If you have any other suggestions, you may let us know via comments. We will try to include it in our next update.